Philip Doddridge (b. London, England, 1702; d. Lisbon, Portugal, 1751) belonged to the Non-conformist Church (not associated with the Church of England). Its members were frequently the focus of discrimination. Offered an education by a rich patron to prepare him for ordination in the Church of England, Doddridge chose instead to remain in the Non-conformist Church. For twenty years he pastored a poor parish in Northampton, where he opened an academy for training Non-conformist ministers and taught most of the subjects himself. Doddridge suffered from tuberculosis, and when Lady Huntington, one of his patrons, offered to finance a trip to Lisbon for his health, he is reputed to have said, "I can as well go to heaven from Lisbon as from Nort… Go to person page >
My God, Thy service well demands. P. Doddridge. [Thanksgiving for Recovery from Sickness.] In the D. MSS. this hymn is No. 55, is dated "Nov. 14, 1737," and headed,
"A Thought on recovery from Sickness in which much of the Presence of God had been experienced. Particularly intended for the use of Miss Nanny Bliss."
This heading is altered in Doddridge's handwriting to
"Thought on recovery from a dangerous sickness in which much of the presence of God had been experienced. Particularly intended for the use of a friend who had been in extreme danger by the bursting of an artery in her stomach."
It was included in Job Orton's posthumous edition of Doddridge's Hymn, &c, 1755, No. 364, in 7 stanzas of 4 lines, as one of the "Hymns on Particular Occasions, and in Uncommon Measures." It is headed therein "On Recovery from Sickness, during which much of the Divine Favour had been experienced." In J. D. Humphreys's edition of the Hymns, &c, the text and heading as in Orton's ed. were repeated. When the nature of the sickness is remembered, the original manuscript is more intensely vivid than the printed text. In the manuscript stanza ii., lines 3, 4, read:—
"When life in purple torrents flowed From every gushing vein;"
stanza iii., 1. 3:—
" And teach me with my quivering lips;"
and stanza v., 1. 4:—
"That made salvation mine."
The special personal character of this hymn has limited its use. It might, however, be easily adapted for special or general thanksgiving after sickness.
Display Title: My God, Thy Service Well DemandsFirst Line: My God, Thy service well demandsTune Title: EADLEYAuthor: Philip Doddridge, 1702-1751Meter: CMSource: Published posthumously in Hymns Founded on Various Texts in the Holy Scripture. By the Late Reverend Philip Doddridge, D. D., by Job Orton (J. Eddowes & J. Cotton: 1755)